Guwahati: The World Bank Financed Project – Assam Agribusiness and Rural Transformation Project (APART) has initiated a pilot mission to enhance the cultivation of medicinal and aromatic plants in the state.
The pilot mission is for a period of two years. The project is initiated with the cultivation of a few crops like lemongrass, vetiver, tulsi, and patchouli in selected districts, which include Dhemaji, Majuli, Biswanath, Karbi Anglong, Goalpara, Kokrajhar, and Dhubri.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Directorate of Horticulture and Food Processing, Govt. of Assam and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP) and formally exchanged on June 21, 2022. As per the MoU, CSIR-CIMAP will provide technical advisory support for the pilot mission on medicinal and aromatic plants (MAP) in the State of Assam.
Under the assignment, CSIR-CIMAP will support the Directorate of Horticulture and the Agricultural Technology Management Agencies (ATMAs) in the districts to carry out market-led demonstrations in a cluster mode on the specified crops in the selected districts. They will also support the post-harvest management and processing demonstrations, and set up mini processing plants for the medicinal and aromatic plants, alongside providing market linkages through buyer-seller meetings, training, and capacity building of the beneficiary farmers, the state government, and the project staff.
Present at the signing of the MoU was Dr. Ashish Kumar Bhutani, Addl. Chief Secretary and Agriculture Production Commissioner to the Govt. of Assam, State Project Director of ARIAS Society, and officials from the Horticulture Department, CIMAP, and ARIAS Society.
This intervention looks forward to helping the farmers with additional income in the future.